The Waiting Game

March 21, 2015
by Martin Wiles

Gardening has been one of my favourite pastimes for a number of years. As the warm temperatures of spring make their arrival, I'm always eager to plunge my hands into the dirt. My anxiousness often has its drawbacks. Many replanting notches dot my belt, but the end of cold weather guarantees success. Plants grow and seeds sprout. Waiting, however, is the part of gardening that I don't enjoy. Corn kernels may germinate and raise their heads in March, but it's June before I gnaw on a succulent ear of corn. Tomatoes, squash, beans, and cucumbers take about the same length of time to produce.

Psychologists refer to such a waiting process as "delayed gratification". Initial effort is made, but the reward for the effort hangs in the future. The same applies to Christ's return.

James 5:7 – Dear brothers and sisters, be patient as you wait for the Lord's return. Consider the farmers who patiently wait for the rains in the fall and in the spring. They eagerly look for the valuable harvest to ripen. (NLT)

When Christ didn't return quickly enough, first-century believers were tempted either to give up their faith altogether or to return to the religion of the Jews and term Him a fraud. Two thousand years later, I might be tempted to do the same, but I must delay gratification just as they did. God's timetable is different. With Him, one day is as a thousand years. He can distinguish the voices of a million people praying simultaneously. What appears as an extremely long period to me may only be a second in His time.

Christ's coming will occur, just as my garden produces, at a certain time. Only the Father knows the day, but when the time is right, He will instruct His Son to get His children and bring the current world order to an end.

How or when end-time events will unfold isn't the most important aspect. More crucial is our readiness to meet Him. By accepting His forgiveness, living obediently to His commands, and aiding in the expansion of His kingdom, we can be ready. Are you prepared?

Prayer: Empower us, Lord Jesus, to live daily with eagerness and readiness for Your return. Amen.

About the author:

Martin Wiles <mandmwiles@gmail.com>
Greenwood, South Carolina, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thank you so much.


    a subject that is on our minds and in our hearts as the world races toward
    end times and His return. Your devotional speaks to the Body clearly.


    Great analogy Martin! My hubby also shares your love for gardening which has many valuable spiritual lessons. The one you wrote today is excellent – we must be patient trusting the Lord of the harvest will return when the time is ripe.
    Blessings.


    Martin – I was reminded of the The chorus of the hymn “When We See Christ”-a wonderful hope.
    “It will be worth it all when we see Jesus,
    Life’s trials will seem so small when we see Christ;
    One glimpse of His dear face all sorrow will erase,
    So bravely run the race till we see Christ.”


    Dear Martin, Thanks for the insight into the scriptures. I grew up on a farm and it is especially relevant to me. Here in Saskatchewan, we are still waiting for enough warmth to plant, but now, as a city dweller, I am busy getting “bedding plants” ready to go outdoors soon (we hope). Thanks for reminding us that we can trust the future of our spiritual life just as surely as we trust that the seeds we plant will sprout.


    Great analogy Martin.
    As a gardener myself, I understand the patience one needs.
    On the other hand, it is so true how impatient many Christians have become waiting for the return of Christ.
    Even though its been over two-thousand years, we must continue to be ready.
    Thanks for the reminder.
    God bless your ministry and have a blessed Easter.


    Martin, thanks for this timely reminder. It was exciting to see your devotional this morning.
    Thank you for sharing your personal story, and thanks for being an encouragement in word and deed.


    Dear Martin Wiles,
    Thanks for your devotional.
    I consider the waiting time for Jesus to come to us as a time for us to be witnesses to the unsaved of our friends and relatives and to those of all the world who are in need of the Word and the testimony of all Christians. I pray that we’ll use the time to the best for His Kingdom’s sake — Yes, a portion of it on our knees so to speak.
    So help us God we plead.
    Amen.


    Thank you Martin for this message. So often we say “give me patience Lord, but I want it now”. It is always good “to wait upon the Lord”.
    I always appreciate your writings.

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